Web Spins February Challenge – Racing Stripe

Late, but I hope not too late, my attempt at Racing Stripe for the Web Spins Challenge, working through the book Spin Art by Jacey Boggs. Racing Stripe consists of spinning a singles yarn while letting an existing yarn wrap around it in a controlled way.

fibre and yarn

I had this small arty batt carded and for the wrapping I chose a variegated cotton yarn that would sometimes contrast and sometimes blend in.

racing stripe singles

The spun singles. I ‘lost’ the striping yarn a few time in the fibre, especially to begin with. My batt was only carded once and was quite textural so I went with the flow as I drafted, resulting in some thicker parts with less wrapping and some thin, heavily wrapped sections.

racing stripe plied

I plied it – it’s supposed to be a singles but I wanted to see what would happen. It will find its way into a weaving sooner or later.

Web Spins challenge

A few months ago I went on an art retreat with my spinning wheel and tried out a few of the techniques in Jacey Boggs’ book Spin Art. Since then I haven’t had time to pick it up again or practise what I learned, but Monika of  red2white and Marian of  Florcita are just starting a new challenge, Web Spins: ‘The aim is to improve our basic spinning and learn new spinning techniques to be able to create various types of textured yarns’.  Slow spinning – one technique a month. Sounds perfect.

spinning supplies

scarves

These are all woven with my handspun on a 12 inch Ashford Knitter’s rigid heddle loom.

textile

textile

textile

I made them at the end of 2010. It’s high time to warp the loom again, since the New Year it’s been all spinning and no weaving.

fibre

Work is frenetic at the moment but I am making time to go to a weekly patchwork class on the island – two peaceful hours with likeminded people, and lovely log cabin to play with.

And out of this something very exciting is being born – the new Tiree Tapestry Group – tapestry in the sense of community tapestry, using a wide range of creative textile techniques. We’ll have a web site soon but there’s a little bit about us on our Facebook page. Our first meeting is on Friday – I can’t wait!

since June…

I needed a blogging break after finishing my course but it grew rather longer than I intended. If anyone is still here reading, this is what I’ve been doing since then.

In July, I was given a couple of Tiree fleeces, a Jacob and a Suffolk, by a very kind crofter friend, and spent some time learning how to turn this

fibres

into this,

fibres

and then to this.

yarn

August brought visitors and walks by the sea.

birds

In September, we sadly said goodbye to Tansy, our darling companion of almost 17 years – this photo was taken in the spring. She loved to run on the beach and the machair right up to the week she died. I miss her so much.

Tibetan spaniel

In October I collected blues, yellows and greens together and made some little pieces of felt for the International Day of Felt. But I didn’t get myself organised in time to get other people involved as well – I will next year, I hope, when the colours will be Red-Purple-Blue.

felt

While all my flat surfaces were filled up with blues and yellows and greens…

fibre and fabric

I spun some of it too.

handspun yarn

In fact, I’ve been spinning a lot in the last few months. I’ve woven scarves with some of these yarns now, but the basket keeps filling up again.

handspun yarns

I think my birthday visit to the mainland deserves a post of its own, for another day. I don’t quite know how this blog will evolve without the focus of the OCA course. Mostly textiles still, of course, but maybe a bit more of life as well. I’ve tried keeping a separate blog for ‘other stuff’ but since it’s a challenge to keep one blog alive, let alone two, a more eclectic mix may be the way to go from now on.